Today’s message is from Pastor Pam Sutherland of the St. Paul United Methodist Church & Fort Gibson United Methodist Church
Good intentions. I have them. Don’t you? I had good intentions of getting my Christmas shopping done before December rolled around. It’s Christmas Eve and I’m still not done. In my defense, I won’t see some of my family until the week after Christmas so I still have time. I’m hoping those last-minute gifts I sent across the country on Monday will arrive by Christmas but they probably won’t. I had good intentions to send out Christmas cards early this year so friends and family living in other places would have my new address in time to send me a Christmas card. That chore was finished on Wednesday, too late for anyone to send one back. Oh well, my intentions were good.
I also have good intentions throughout the year. I intend to call people, drop by for a visit, catch up with old friends, send cards to people, clean my house, and a million other things! I’m not the only one, am I?
Many people have good intentions when it comes to accepting the gift of salvation that Jesus offers to one and all. They think they have plenty of time. They want to sow their wild oats. They don’t want to give up certain habits just yet. They’re afraid saying “yes” to Jesus might mean they have to move to some country far away to be a missionary. The reasons (excuses) are many. Some think they are “okay” because they are good people, or they go to church. They have good intentions, but you know what they say, don’t you?
“The road to hell is paved with good intentions.”
In others words many people have good intentions to trust Jesus for their salvation some day. Sadly, most people never do and that decision, or lack of decision, has eternal consequences. If you are one of those people, even if you’ve been in church your whole life, what are you waiting for?
2 Corinthians 6:2 tells us,
“Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.” Friends, tomorrow is not promised. Today may be all you have. If you have never trusted in the death and resurrection of Christ for your salvation and the forgiveness of your sin, behold (that means pay attention) today is the day.”
Scripture says in Romans 10:9-10:
“If you declare with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved. “
This Christmas, if you have never trusted in Jesus Christ for salvation, I pray that you will make the choice to receive the greatest gift ever given! Don’t wait for tomorrow. Today is the day of salvation!
May the Lord bless you and keep you at Christmas and throughout the New Year, and may you overflow with joy as you celebrate the birth of Christ.